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Digital Marketer needed! Come and join Thames Motor Group’s team

It’s not often you’ll find such a varied role, so read on below to find out about what being Thames Motor Group’s Digital Marketing Executive entails….

We’re looking for someone who knows the difference between SEO and CTR, their Google analytics from their Jetpack stats and their blog posts from their meta data. If that sounds like you then do have a think about applying!

What does Digital Marketing for Thames Motor Group entail?

There’s quite a lot to do on a daily basis when you’re in the role of a Digital Marketer. We have Twitter, Facebook and this blog that need taking care of as well as burgeoning profiles on Linked In and Pinterest that need curation and promotion. We need someone with an eye for great design, full of ideas and with a passion for the cars that we sell. It’s not enough to just be able to put a sentence together – we need a real wordsmith who can craft a post to engage and delight our potential customers. We also need someone analytical, who can look at our Google Analytics and decide what’s working, what needs help and what’s worth putting more time into.

What kind of projects would a Digital Marketer for Thames Motor Group work on?

We’ve worked on lots of great projects over the past year – from researching global feedback engines to sponsoring events as well as taking tons of photographs along the way. We launched a brand new website in September 2013 which gave our customers a much better way of navigating our used and new stock, as well as freshening up our online presence.

Our new website was a real labour of love - we're still so proud of it! Thanks, GForces

Our new website was a real labour of love – we’re still so proud of it! Thanks, GForces

We added Alfa Romeo, Chrysler and Jeep to our Tunbridge Wells branch in the Summer

Alfa Romeo, Chrysler and Jeep are added to Thames Motor Group in Tunbridge Wells

New franchises in Tunbridge Wells

After a project to choose the best customer feedback solution, we chose Feefo and ended up winning a Trusted Merchant award for our 91% status.

We only joined Feefo in October 2013 - by January 2014 we'd won this!

We only joined Feefo in October 2013 – by January 2014 we’d won this!

We also sponsored the wonderful Fusion event, presenting the Performing Arts award to Emily Woodham for her fantastic singing voice.

Kevin Khanna, Dealer Principal of Thames Motor Group Tunbridge Wells, presents Emily with her award Credit: Pat Pope Photography

Kevin Khanna, Dealer Principal of Thames Motor Group Tunbridge Wells, presents Emily with her award
Credit: Pat Pope Photography

And in the summer of 2013 we went to the Goodwood Festival Moving Motor Show and took the most amazing pictures of our Abarth cars racing around the track, the stunning Alfa Romeo 4C as well as the new Peugeot RCZ R.

Shots from Goodwood available on our Flickr Page

Shots from Goodwood available on our Flickr Page
Photos taken by Tannice Pendegrass

We had some training from Digitom Ltd and we made our very first in-house video

Tannice films Fiat 500

Filming Fiat – image credit @DigitomTV

We sponsored the Bracknell Bees for the third year in a row and launched a world first with Windsor Football Club – the opportunity to wrap your car in their football strip!

Bracknell Bees wear the Abarth Scorpion  Credit: Blue Line Photography

Bracknell Bees wear the Abarth Scorpion
Credit: Blue Line Photography

Sanjay Sobte of Thames Fiat and Kevin Stott of Windsor FC unveil the Fiat 500 wrapped in Windsor FC kit
Sanjay Sobte (left), Dealer Principal of Thames Motor Group Slough, unveils the Fiat 500 wrapped in Windsor FC kit. Kevin Stott, (right) said “[Sanj] has a wonderful creative appreciation and extraordinary patience because it’s taken us six months to put this together. “I think we are blessed with having him as a sponsor and I would describe the deal as pushing the snowball over the hill, we’re just going to see how it gathers momentum.”

 

Last but not least of our big projects, we helped The Tunbridge Wells Project with their trip to Germany by providing them with one of our Fiat 500L Trekking cars.

Chris (L) and David (R) took the Fiat 500L Trekking to Wiesbaden and back. Read about their adventure here

Chris (L) and David (R) took the Fiat 500L Trekking to Wiesbaden and back. Read about their adventure here

Developing and growing our digital presence

As well as dealing with the website, updating pages with new car details and writing fantastic copy to entice our customers to read more about what cars we offer, we’re looking for someone who knows a thing or two about social media. Twitter has been our main avenue of development, with our follower base rising from 74 to 735 (at time of posting) since June 2013. That’s an incredible 900% rise, which we’re really proud of. But we’d like to grow more and focus on Facebook for 2014. If you’re a keen Tweeter, Facebook Fan or Pinterest Pinhead, you’re ideal for this role. We’ll be investing some money into our social media in 2014, so you’ll need to be able to budget and report back on what successes the social media has had.

Social media for Thames Motor Group

Social media for Thames Motor Group

Press releases and blog posts

Creativity is the key need for this role – that’s something that just can’t be taught. You’ll need to think of creative press angles, new blog posts as many times a week as you can as well as working closely with our in-house Graphic Designer, Nick. Nick’s a great one for taking an idea and growing it into useful digital assets. As a team, you’ll work together to come up with cohesive messages that fit within the brand of Thames Motor Group, as well as the brand tone of each of our franchises.

Nick England, Graphic Designer

Nick, our in-house Graphic Designer, is a creative genius!

Understanding the motor market

You don’t need to be a card-carrying petrol-head to be our Digital Marketer, but a keen interest in cars is a distinct advantage! You’ll learn lots about the different franchises and which models and makes attract who. You’ll need to be able to write for print and digital as well as in language that attracts all kinds of buyers. We provide a range of models, from supercars to little run-arounds, so no piece of copy should be the same. We want someone with a distinctive style and flair and a great sense of humour to be able to build on our existing tone of voice.

Petrolhead

Petrol in the veins not necessary

So, what are you waiting for? Please do apply for this great role by visiting thamesmotorgroup.co.uk/recruitment! There’s no closing date on the job role – we’ll just take on the right person when they come along. Do include a portfolio if you have one to hand – it always helps to have a good idea of your writing style.

deskphoto

Your desk is waiting!

GOOD LUCK!

Car tax discs to be ripped up

It’s a ritual that’s 93 years old – applying for a new car tax disc. Most of us will remember the disc as a minor frustration but some will have enjoyed carefully tearing at the tiny perforations.

British Car Tax Disc from 1921

One of the very first tax discs
Credit: BritishTaxDiscs.co.uk

 

The 1888 budget was the first to introduce the concept of vehicle tax while a duty that applied to motor vehicles specifically came in with the Roads Act 1920. It wasn’t until one year later that the tax disc itself, in paper form, was introduced.

1938 Car Tax Disc

1938 saw the introduction of perforations.
Tear too hard and you’d split it in two.
Credit: BritishTaxDiscs.co.uk

End of the road for Car Tax Discs

Motorists can already budget the cost of their tax disc by buying 6 months, which attracts 10% extra, but the government now proposes allowing motorists to pay with a monthly direct debit. This should make car ownership more attractive and more affordable, as most bills have a monthly payment option. The 10% extra you pay for 6 months will be cut to 5%, whilst monthly payments will also cost you 5% more than paying for a year up front.

No one will miss car tax discs more than this little guy

No one will miss car tax discs more than this little guy

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Loving your car this Valentine’s Day – service plans for the future

It’s nearly that special day again and the shops are full of red hearts, flowers and soft teddy bears. Whether you’ve got someone to spoil or not, there’s someone you shouldn’t forget this Valentine’s Day, and that’s your trusty steed. Your car takes you everywhere and only asks for a little fuel and attention in return. Why not show it you really care with a year’s service plan?

Car maintenance Service Plans from Thames Motor Group

What happens during a car service?

Servicing is different to an MOT in that it’s not a legal requirement. However, servicing is extremely important to your car’s health.

The most important part of a car service is changing the engine oil. The technicians will also clean the air filter, if required, check all the lights in the vehicle are in good working order and also check the brakes and power steering fluid.

Technicians will also have a good look at your suspension, shock absorbers and brakes as well as the windscreen and the wipers.

What’s a Service Plan for?

Servicing can be quite expensive if you don’t plan for it, so that’s why Thames give you the option to spread the cost.

Our service plans start from as little as 50 pence per day – less than your daily newspaper. We offer flexible service plans for all our franchises (Fiat, Citroen, Peugeot, Alfa Romeo, Abarth, Chrysler and Jeep). Spreading the cost across the year helps you budget for your car’s needs, and parts and labour costs are included.

We stick to the rigorous, strict guidelines of all our manufacturers and our service plans are protected from price inflation, giving you peace of mind. Using original parts, we’ll keep your car in the best condition which should keep the re-sale price of your car as high as possible.

What else do I get if I buy a service plan from Thames?

Free stuff!

Service Plan holders are entitled to extra benefits like FREE collection and delivery as well as a FREE courtesy car. We’ll also throw in a FREE wash and vacuum as well as 10% OFF any branded accessories for your car. Can’t say fairer than that!

Show your car how committed you are to a long future together, with a Service Plan from Thames. It’s more effective than decorating it or stuffing it full of roses.

Valentine's Car

 Call 01892 256041 (Tunbridge Wells) or 01753 325053 (Slough) for more information.

Citroen Cactus – even more pictures revealed

Citroen, with these pictures you are spoiling us! Loads of new pictures of their funky new Citroen C4 Cactus have been revealed, just one month after our first post about the Citroen Cactus on January 6th.

First revealed as a concept car, the idea behind the Citroen Cactus has actually been around since 2007! Conceived as an experiment to see how much hardware can be removed from a car without affecting key car enjoyment factors, like drive and comfort, it’s going to be one of the most exciting cars of 2014.

Citroen Cactus pictures revealed - available in October

Who you looking at?

We’ve also been told more about this quirky car which is light and spacious as well as cute.

The Citroen Cactus lowdown

High ground clearance makes for a better ride in the Citroen Cactus and the interior retains that sofa-like seat that we saw in the concept designs. Simplicity and ease of use are Citroen’s key words for the Cactus, as it’s got just 12 buttons inside along with a seven-inch centre touch screen that will control all the Cactus’ main functions.

The soft-touch material on the side, known as Airbump, comes in black, grey, dune or chocolate and, Citroen say, should be maintenance free.

Safety hasn’t been compromised for style but simply reorganised – the passenger airbag is now above the windshield, instead of in the dashboard, allowing space for a new storage compartment.

Standard equipment includes the beautiful panoramic sunroof as the car is available in both petrol and diesel, automatic or manual. Automatic models will have a gear selector mounted on the dash with shift paddles and buttons to get going, reverse and park.

Pricing information is scarce, but Citroen say they wanted to make a car that is affordable as well as attractive. It’s small, light and different to anything else available in the segment.

This quirky crossover car is proof of Citroen’s commitment to innovation and will certainly get industry insiders, as well as potential owners, talking. We simply love it.

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Myths to beware when buying a used car

Buying a used car is exciting, especially when you find an absolute bargain that’s just right for you. But buying a used car privately has risks and pitfalls, all detailed by HPI, the independent vehicle information provider for the UK.

HPI checks will protect you from many of the problems detailed below, but not all. If you’re considering buying a used car from a private seller, always put the effort in and follow our advice below.

Alternatively, used a local dealership that do HPI checks as standard. This is a service Thames Motor Group provide to you for free when you are buying a used car from us. All of our franchised used cars are subject to rigorous manufacturer checks and testing and come with a warrantee, giving you extra peace of mind should something go wrong.

buying a used car from Thames Motor Group

If you’ve found someone selling the ideal motor for you, read our tips on buying a used car safely.

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Pothole damage repair statistics released

It’s that time of year again. You may not think potholes are seasonal since councils up and down the country struggle to fill them, making them a year-round hazard, but pothole season is upon us.

pothole damage repair costs

Some motorists are taking to the streets with spray paint, asking the council to sort out potholes

As the severe wet weather slowly starts to subside, the freezing mornings are taking over. Kent’s council are waiting for the rain to drain away before they start filling in the potholes, meaning motorists should beware the cost of pothole damage repair.

Kent County Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment, David Brazier said “we are aware [many] suffered as a result of the severe weather…. the extreme weather will cause potholes and we have geared up to tackle this”

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Fiat 500 fridge brings cool to your kitchen

Fiat 500s are cool – everyone knows that. They’re everywhere and available in so many colours and trim levels that Fiat say there are 500,000 ways to make the Fiat 500 your own. But how many of us have one in our kitchen?

Fiat 500 fridge colours

Fiat 500 fridge specs

The red version of the retro SMEG500 is now available in the UK, adding to the white and green versions already on sale. With a 100 litre capacity, three removable bottle holders and a removable glass shelf it will set you back around £5,000. The working headlights make it a massive talking point – requiring an equally large kitchen. It’s made from a real car – an old version, admittedly, but perhaps Smeg could be persuaded to make them in the newer version, due to customer demand?

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Citroen quenches our thirst for new Cactus pictures

Cacti aren’t typically attractive or popular plants, but they’re due a revival with the Citroen Cactus hitting showrooms this year. That’s why the promotional cycle for the new Citroen Cactus has begun in earnest with Citroen releasing 12 new pictures of the hot new crossover.

With funky styling, unique looks and attractive fuel economy figures, the new Citroen Cactus is built on the successful EMP2 platform, currently wowing consumers and journalists alike on the C4 Picasso range. Light is another commonality, with a full-length panoramic roof that floods the cabin with sunshine. We need all we can get at this time of year.

As thirsty as a Cactus (i.e. not very) – Citroen Cactus fuel economy

True to its name, this hybrid gets 94mpg, which Citroen says can lower average fuel consumption around city streets by up to 45%.

Amazing fuel economy is far from the Cactus’ only unique offering, with bench seating in the front and rear and raised air bumps to the side to protect it from scratches, bumps and knocks.

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Realistic New Year’s Resolutions for you and your car maintenance

It’s that time of year again, the time of year when we think about cutting back on alcohol, cigarettes and the excesses of chocolate and cake we’ve consumed over the festive season. January 1st and 2nd see several new joggers on the scene, puffing and wheezing in the cold wintery air, determined to lose those 5-10lbs they’ve put on.

Body maintenance is a common resolution yet, sadly, most people’s new year’s resolutions are either unrealistic or they just don’t have the resolve required to stick to them. They just end up crashing and burning  long before the end of the first month.

SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-based

Car maintenance on New Year Resolutions list

It’s time to set SMARTer goals for your new year’s resolution. – What better time than to consider your best pal – your car – for the subject of your fresh start for 2014? Car maintenance should be a part of your everyday routine and so it’s worth starting to look at the year ahead in terms of car care. It doesn’t matter if your car is 6 months old, 6 years old or pushing old age – these car maintenance tips are important for any age of car.

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Keeping on the road in the winter: our winter driving tips

winter driving at night

No one enjoys bad weather driving

It’s late on a Tuesday night in cold December – just a few more days you finish work for the Christmas period and the snow is coming down, thick and fast. Having left work late, you find the traffic is unusually heavy for the time of evening. You soon see why: it’s a broken down vehicle trapped in a snow drift. Feeling sorry for the driver, you drive on, warm and dry in your car.

Unfortunately for the driver you passed, they haven’t got an emergency kit in the car. But have you?

Winter driving tips for everyone

winter driving kit

It’s important to be prepared

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents suggest you carry the following in your car in case of stranding due to winter driving conditions.

  • Tow rope
  • Shovel
  • Wellington Boots
  • Hazard Warning Triangle
  • De-icing equipment
  • First aid kit
  • Torch
  • Car blanket (for you!)
  • Warm clothes
  • Emergency rations
  • Mobile Phone

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